Hereditary nonpolyposis colorectal cancer (HNPCC) is a common inherited form of neoplasia caused by germline mutations in DNA mismatch repair (MMR) genes. MMR proteins have been reported to associate with several proteins, including the human exonuclease 1 (hEXO1). We report here novel HNPCC-hMLH1 mutant proteins (Tll7M, Q426X and 1813insA) in Danish HNPCC patients. We demonstrate that these mutant HNPCC-hMLH1 proteins are unable to form complexes with hEXOl and hPMS2 in vivo. The results indicate that mutations found in HNPCC gene carriers disrupt hMLH1 - hEXO1 complex formation and hMutLα heterodimer assembly essential for MMR activity.